Home Europe UK joins the Netherlands in sending air defense missiles to Ukraine

UK joins the Netherlands in sending air defense missiles to Ukraine

UK sending AMRAAMs to Ukraine
Illustration: Raytheon file photo of an AMRAAM missile

The UK defense ministry announced it will donate AMRAAM air defense missiles to Ukraine to help boost the country’s defense against Russian missile strikes.

Unlike the Netherlands, which announced on Wednesday it would send unspecified missiles for an air defense systems supplied by one of the allies, the UK defense ministry specified it would be sending AMRAAMs in the coming weeks for use with the NASAMS air defense systems pledged by the US.

The rockets will help to protect Ukraine’s critical national infrastructure, with the announcement coming days after Russian missiles struck civilian targets in cities across Ukraine.

According to the defense ministry, hundreds of additional air defense missiles, of other types previously provided, will also be donated as part of the package, along with hundreds of additional aerial drones to support Ukraine’s information gathering and logistics capabilities, and a further 18 howitzer artillery guns, in addition to the 64 already delivered.

“Bolstering Ukraine’s air defenses has been and remains a priority for UK military support. So far we have provided a variety of air defense systems including Stormer vehicles fitted with Starstreak launchers, and hundreds of anti-air missiles,” the defense ministry said.

Ben Wallace announced the latest tranche of equipment ahead of a meeting of NATO Defence Ministers in Brussels on October 13, where allies met on the sidelines October 12 to discuss further support for Ukraine.

“Russia’s latest indiscriminate strikes on civilian areas in Ukraine warrant further support to those seeking to defend their nation. So today I have authorized the supply of AMRAAM anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine,” UK defense secretary Ben Wallace said.

“These weapons will help Ukraine defend its skies from attacks and strengthen their overall missile defense alongside the US NASAMS.”

In addition to the missiles, UK will also give £10 million to NATO’s Comprehensive Assistance Package for Ukraine. The funding will help to provide urgent non-lethal assistance to Ukraine such as winter clothes, shelters, generators, fuel trucks and ambulances for the Ukrainian Army ahead of the winter.